Homemade Chocolate Chips or Carob Chips ~ {Improved} (dairy, soy, and sugar-free)

Love chocolate?  These Homemade Chocolate Chips (or carob chips) are dairy, soy, and sugar-free and great for baking, trail mixes, or eating right out of the bag!  If you know someone on a special diet this will save them a TON of money.  The store bought chocolate chips without dairy are a fortune!

I love making wholesome, allergy-friendly substitutes for many store bought items, including Homemade Taco Seasoning, Easiest Coconut Milk, White Chocolate Chips, and Dairy and Sugar-free Condensed Milk. One of the first recipes that I posted, and also one of my most popular, is my recipe for Homemade Chocolate Chips.

We make these fairly frequently in my home, but honestly, they almost never make it into cookies.

Once they’re made my kids regularly ask for carob chips….and since they are made with wholesome ingredients, I typically say “yes.”

The reasons that I initially set out to make my own carob chips (we usually make them with carob so the kids (and I :-)) don’t get overstimulated from too much chocolate), were several:

Basically, the reasons are the same as they are for all of my make your own processed substitutes like:

1.  Control over ingredients

A lot of folks are on special diets these days, so more and more of us need control over what goes into our mouths.  Here’s how this chocolate chip recipe can help:

– there’s no dairy in these chips!

–  you can make these sugar free.  I use xylitol and stevia due to make a candida-diet friendly treat

No trans fats in these chips (remember what those are?  Partially or fully hydrogenated fat.  Not good.  Fake food.)

No artificial vanilla

No soy

2.  Cost savings: – I almost fall over in the grocery store or health food store aisle when I see the price tags on “wholesome” chocolate chips or carob chips.  One bag of allergen free chocolate chips that I saw the other day cost something like $4.59 for a 10 ounce bag….Whoa!  That’s $7.34 per pound!!  Not on our budget!

3.  Time Savings:  Sort of.

Recently I’ve been having a kitchen-time epiphany of sorts.

I used to get really down about my messy kitchen (you might want to read my post about Surprising Help for Messy Moms) and how much time I spend in it. (Maybe someday some of my readers should come on over and see what my kitchen looks like when I’m trying to get a recipe “down.”  Well, really it often looks like that.)  But recently, I’m doing a little better about not getting down about the mess.  A little.

Even if I spend a lot of time in the kitchen making whole foods, at least I’m not spending 1-3 hours in a grocery store with kids who bug me for stuff I don’t want.  (Really it’s just my youngest who does most of that.  He’s a sucker for modern packaging.)

If you make your own everything (or lots of stuff….) you’re saving time and money shopping.  So you are probably going to buy less “impulse shopping” deals.  Plus you get to save by not buying $3.79 / gallon gas, or whatever astronomical price it is in your neck of the woods.

4.  Extra Bonus – Control over the Final Product:  I personally like chips, but I really like chocolate chunks.  You too?  I figure it’s a growing thing because now the stores are selling chocolate chunks.  Well, guess what?  It’s a lot of work to make chocolate or carob chips, but with a knife and a cutting board, you can make chunks pretty easily.

The reasons I revised this recipe:

1.  Better Taste.  My kids would say now and then that the original Chocolate Chip recipe was good, but they really didn’t like it as well as they could.

2.  More “Cookie Friendly”.  Like I said, the chips don’t regularly make it into cookies, but when they have, mine have held together well.  Like in my Chocolate Chunk Coconut Macadamia Cookies.  (These are grain free, sugar free and great!!!)

A few readers have had trouble with this so I wanted to try another oil to see if they would do better.

And they did.

You can make these with cocoa butter.  They taste great and hold together well in baking.

The smell of the cocoa butter while it was melting was a treat in and of itself and lends itself to a rich chocolatey flavor of the chips.  My kids said that they were so good and tasted almost as, if not as good as, store bought chocolate chips.  (My kids haven’t had many of those, but I really consider that to be a compliment.)

*Please note, there are affiliate and/or referral links in this post. If you click on them and make a purchase I might make a commission. Your support of my blog means a ton to me and keeps this free resource up and running – thanks :)!

NOTES:

1.  Where to buy oils.  I am looking for a good bulk source for cocoa butter that won’t break the bank and will be fresh.  I have some more work to do on this and will try to keep you updated.  Most cocoa butter I found was $15/lb or more.  This one works out to about $11 per pound and looks like a good source so I’d try that one for now.

2.  I used carob.   If you use cocoa powder, you may need to add a little more sweetener to the recipe, depending on your taste since carob has an inherent sweetness to it.

3.  Stevia extract seems really expensive, but it isn’t! – what else would you consider paying more than $8 per ounce for???  Once you find you like it, you can purchase it in bulk.  I purchase the 1 lb container and it lasts for a looooong time.  You can find it for quite a bit less money on Iherb, one of my favorite places to shop.

Stevia is pretty hard to measure, but these stainless steel mini measuring spoons from Amazon are super duper handy.  The 2nd smallest is the size of 1/32 of a teaspoon so you can easily measure your stevia powder.

 

Norpro Mini Measuring Spoons

4.  Need to substitute for the stevia?  Here is my handy dandy post on this fabulous sweetener.

4.  Sweeteners:  (I recommend powdering the healthiest granulated sweetener you can have.  I used xylitol.  This brand is quite reasonable and is made in the USA.)

5.  Dandy Blend coffee substitute is really nice and gluten free (despite it being made from barley).  It is expensive but a nice alternative.  For a cheaper alternative for making your own coffee substitute for drinking, see my Homemade Coffee Substitute.)

6.  You will have an easier time getting the chocolate / carob mixture out of the baking pan if you line it with parchment.  I just choose not to do so because I’m cheap frugal.

7.  If using cocoa butter, you will likely need to melt it first before measuring since it is hard to accurately measure it otherwise.

8.  For a yummy variation, add some extract like in Mint Chocolate | Carob Chips.

How can you use these Homemade Chocolate Chips?

  • Of course, in cookies and bars
  • Eat them “as is” – like eating chocolate chips out of the bag
  • Break into bigger pieces and use as a rough-shaped chocolate or carob bar
  • Pour  into candy molds like I did in my Healthy “Almost Reese’s” Candy post and make candies any time of year.  I purchased star-shaped silicone molds like these to use on the Fourth of July.
  • Add into homemade ice cream like in  Chocolate Almond Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream or Mint Chocolate Chip Coconut Milk Ice Cream.  With temperatures the way they’ve been around here, I will definitely be bringing out the ice cream maker soon!
  • After melting, drizzle on top of fruit or dip fruit or other things for a special treat.  How about chocolate covered strawberries?  bananas? nut clusters?  Endless possibilities.
  • Drizzle on cake – This would be fabulous on a cheesecake.  Take a look at these fabulous Dairy Free Cheesecake Tarts from my friend, Ricki at Diet Dessert N Dogs.  Instead of apricot, drizzle melted chocolate or carob chips on top – Yum!

Coming soon — a recipe for White Chocolate Chips.  And maybe–a few will make their way into some cookies!

Hope you love these as much as we do.

How will you use these Homemade Chocolate Chips?

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Comments

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  1. Hi! I don’t have cocoa butter but I have nutiva shortening made with organic palm fruit oil, organic unrefined red palm oil and organic unrefined coconut oil, would it work instead?
    Thnak you!

  2. Just made these and they are simply awesome!! Really yummy! You must love coconut of course, but if that’s a flavor you like, these will be a real treat!

  3. ensuring oil is at an ok temperature, and allowing mixture to cool and thicken while stirring should be part of this recipe.- pretty important. I’ve been doing this for years.
    ( :

  4. Cocoa butter is very expensive in Canada – and I can’t order from Amazon.com. Amazon.ca does not carry the same product. Would cocoa nibs work (http://www.upayanaturals.com/Cacao_Nibs_2_5_lb_1_13kg_bag_peeled_raw_organi_p/nfl-0970.htm)? Thanks for your input. Would love to try this recipe due to my food allergies.

    • Coco nibs are totally different. They are small bits of unsweetened cocoa. The cocoa butter is just the fat. If you can’t find or buy it I would use palm or coconut oil. Does Bulk Apothecary ship to Canada? I bought a ton from there – it was quite reasonable in bulk.

  5. Why is 1/4 c sweetener AND 2 scoops Stevia called for? Can’t more of one or the other be used?

  6. Is it possible to use something other than stevia? My family hasn’t gotten used to the flavor of stevia so I’d prefer to use something else. Thanks!

  7. Had two questions…. First, the measuring… 6 2/3 ounce of cocoa butter. Typo? Six & 2/3 cups?
    Also, may I use coconut butter? I’m allergic to chocolate. Thanks….can’t wait to make!

    • The measuring 6 2/3 ounces is correct. It is very hard to measure hard cocoa butter in cups, which is why we listed the measurement in ounces. Regarding coconut butter, we have never tried using it. Coconut oil we have tried, and it has worked, so that would be a better option, but you are welcome to try coconut butter.

  8. Kristin Harris says:

    Hi, I am new to your site and actually looking for carob recipes so I can make birthday cakes for dogs. I need to use carob since chocolate is toxic to dogs. Anyway, the reason I am posting is about the palm oil. I don’t know if you happen to be an environmentalist, but would like you to look up palm oil and how it is destroying Indonesia and now parts of Africa. I would then ask that you please use something other than palm oil in hour recipes.
    Thanks for reading this post and I look forward to trying this with coconut oil!

    • Thanks for writing. I have heard about that. I don’t consider myself necessarily to be an environmentalist, but perhaps I am b/c my kids are constantly telling me that our house would be neater if I would just throw things out instead of saving / donating and recycling :).

      I personally just left the option open to others but I only use palm oil since I bought some at a huge discount, but my preference is for sure coconut oil and I probably won’t purchase the palm again. The only issue is it does make a nice frosting, but I can do without :). Thanks again.

  9. Thanks for the recipe! I do appreciate having control over the ingredients and seeing something that should hold up in cookies is great! I am curious though how many ounces of final product this recipe makes – as looking at it now, the prices I can find for cocoa butter (at best $14/lb) it seems it’s more expensive to make these than to buy the Enjoy life or similar allergy friendly chips…(I realize those aren’t sugar free)??

    • Hi there. I bought my cocoa butter in HUGE bulk – and I do see it on Amazon for $13 – I know — not a great savings over $14. I will say that E Life’s are almost all sugar, so they are using a very cheap item as their main ingredient which cuts the cost. I think I mentioned Bulk Apothecary in the post – their prices are a lot less expensive than $14/lb. Hope that helps!

  10. Question: are these shelf-stable, or must they be kept in the fridge?? Also… This amount does not look like it would create 3 cups of chips. From an 8 x 8 pan? Just checking to see if that was a typo at all. :~D I appreciate your website and recipes! Thanks so much!

    • They are pretty shelf stable, but depending on the temperature of your home and the oil you use, they might be soft at room temp. I do think it made about 3 cups, but I might be wrong. Let me know if you try it and it’s wrong. Thanks so much and hope you like them!